Carol Stream is a large town with ethnically diverse residents. It is a great place to raise a family, and it was recently voted one of the top 100 places to live in the United States. Almost half of the households have children. Regardless of how ideal a living environment is, however, not every marriage will last. If you are currently weighing whether you should file for divorce or are dealing with any other family law issue, you should consult a capable family law attorney to discuss your options. At Kollias & Giese, P.C., our Carol Stream divorce lawyers will work diligently to help you pursue a favorable outcome in your case.Parenting Time and Parental Responsibilities
An important consideration in any divorce case involving a child is which allocation of parenting time and responsibilities is in the best interest of the child. In determining what is in a child’s best interest, the court will consider factors such as the relationship between the child and his or her parents, the child’s connection to his or her community, and the mental and emotional well-being of the child. If the child wishes to reside with one parent, his or her wishes may be considered, but they are generally not given significant weight unless the child is appropriately mature.
Under Illinois law, there are two facets of a parent’s rights pertaining to his or her child: parental responsibilities, which refer to the right to make decisions regarding the child’s upbringing, and parenting time, which refers to the right to spend time with the child. A court may divide parental responsibilities between the parents as it sees fit. For example, one parent may be granted the right to make decisions regarding the child’s health care, while the other may be permitted to make decisions regarding the child’s education and religious upbringing. Our divorce attorney can help Carol Stream residents advocate for an arrangement that meets their needs.
When determining an appropriate division of parenting time, it is presumed that both parents are fit and should be granted access to the child, unless proven otherwise. As a result, a court will typically try to develop a parenting time arrangement that allows both parents to spend time with the child.Child Support
In addition to determining parental responsibilities and parenting time, a court dealing with a divorce involving a child must also determine whether either parent should be obliged to pay child support. A child support obligation can be imposed on either parent. It is often the case, however, that the parent who spends less parenting time with the child is required to pay child support to his or her co-parent. Child support payments are typically paid until a child is 18, or until 19 if the child is still in high school.
A Carol Stream divorce attorney can explain the method for calculating a child support obligation. Illinois adheres to what is known as an “income shares” method of determining child support. In other words, the court calculates the support owed based on the net income of the party obligated to pay support, rather than the cost of raising a child. The statutory guidelines set forth percentages that a parent is required to pay, based on the number of children for which he or she is ordered to provide support. A court has the discretion to deviate from the guidelines, however, if either party submits evidence that a deviation would be in the best interest of the child. The court will look at the child’s needs, the parents’ resources, and the child’s standard of living during the marriage to determine if a deviation is appropriate.Discuss Your Case with a Family Law Attorney
In any family law case involving children, meeting the child’s needs should be the foremost concern. If you are a resident of Carol Stream and are faced with a family law matter involving a child or any other issues related to a divorce, you should confer with a seasoned attorney to discuss how you should proceed. Our divorce lawyers represent people throughout Carol Stream and surrounding areas. We can be contacted at (630) 407-1200 or through our online form to schedule a conference.